BP's Tatics in Cape Vincent Ny

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Wind Turbines will adversely impact home values in Cape Vincent

 A new study by the London School  of Economics (LSE) – which looked at more than a million sales of properties close to wind farm sites over a 12-year period – found that values of homes within 1.2  miles of large wind farms were being slashed by about 11 per cent.  Link here to continue reading about this study

Here at home in Cape Vincent...

Michael S. McCann, McCann Appraisal, LLC reviewed the Cape Vincent wind economic committees report on the economic impacts a wind development would have on our community.
McCann found that after completing his review of the subject location, it was clear that numerous homes in the Cape Vincent area will be adversely impacted, and the best available evidence indicates that value loss of 25% to 40% or more will occur to homes within approximately 2 miles of the turbines. This impact is not expected to be uniform, and some losses may well be lower and others higher.

His full report can be read at this link

Michael McCann has kept abreast of the latest developments in Cape Vincent. The following is an email correspondence between Mr. McCann and a resident of Cape Vincent.

 From: Mike McCann
 I read the * linked article,  and a thought occurred to me that may be of some use to you.

In Illinois, farm land values have shot up tremendously over the last several years, from around $3,500-$4,000 per acre to about $10,000 per acre currently. The reasons for this are the increased price of commodities and lower interest rates, which have made farming highly profitable and created more demand and competition for good quality AG dirt.
If this is also true in upstate New York, then all the farmers need to do is sell off a few acres to cover the “losses” that they claim from not getting a huge lease windfall income.
But, more importantly from a zoning/case law perspective, if farm values have increased there, then the land owners do not have a valid claim to “hardship” or financial plight that could be used (theoretically) to help justify a zoning variation or special use.
You know who to call to check local farm prices/sales, so I leave it to you to follow up. But let me know if I can be of any service.
P.S. I see my name and work is still being cited in the blogosphere. And I thought I just had tinnitus..Ha!
Michael S. McCann
McCann Appraisal, LLC
 To: 'Mike McCann'
This link will take to the Town web site where the draft of Cape Vincent’s law is:


Click in the Down Load for “Draft Zoning Law 6-4-12”
The sections that you would be interested in are: 6.7 Noise, 7.16 Tall Structures Applications,

9) To protect the health and safety of all Town residents from ice throw and potential rotor failure, each WECS shall be setback a minimum of:
[a] Six times the total height of the proposed WECS from the nearest residence.

[b] Six times the total height of the proposed WECS from the nearest project boundary or property line.

[c] Six times the total height of the proposed WECS from any road.

[d] 1.25 miles from any WECS to the boundaries of the Village of Cape Vincent and from the Hamlets of Rosiere, Millens Bay, and St. Lawrence Corners as shown on the “Large Scale WECS Exclusion Map,”
Appendix 9.

[e] 1.25 miles from schools. Appendix 9, Large Scale WECS Exclusion Map

[f] In order to ensure that residents of adjoining Towns of Lyme and Clayton are not negatively affected by any WECS proposed in the Town of Cape Vincent, any WECS near the Town’s boundaries shall comply with the Noise Standards in Section 6.7 and shall be no closer than six times the total height of the proposed WECS to that boundary.

10) A map entitled, “Large Scale WECS Exclusion Map,” is attached to this Law as Appendix 9 and it delineates the areas of the Town within which WECS are excluded in conformity with the setbacks established here in above.

The new law has been a six months effort (meeting twice a week for 3 hours time.  We had a committee of 10 people that really busted their hump.

 Thanks for your continued interest in our Town
From: Mike McCann
I read 6.7 and 7.16 now. Looks pretty solid. Any idea if BP will challenge it legally?
To: 'Mike McCann'
The Town received a letter from BP stating that the new Z/L prohibits siting turbines in the town.
They intend to take it to the Article 10 Siting Board as being “unreasonably brudensone”
We will see!
From: Mike McCann
Burdensome? How reasonable is it to dump their burden on 96% of property owners in Cape Vincent? (Rhetorical question, of course).

Keep me in mind if any supporting testimony is needed at an Article 10 hearing (?)

Michael S. McCann

Real Estate Appraisal & Consulting

* Linked article referred to by Mr McCann ~ The fight over wind farms continues in Cape Vincent

Wind Welfare Advocates push Congress to revive Production Tax Credit

Wind power advocates urged Congress on Thursday to quickly restore the production tax credit that expired at the end of 2013, saying that a prolonged period without it threatens gains made in recent years. Continue...

Industrial wind is a taxpayer funded disaster

As a lifelong Democrat, environmental activist and renewable energy advocate, I commend Gov. Paul Le Page’s recent criticisms of the huge taxpayer-funded industrial wind power scam, which will ruin Maine unless it is stopped.

Though initially a proponent of industrial wind, I’ve learned it’s a catastrophe on every level — environmental, fiscal, social and economic. Continue...

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Wind turbine companies deny lawsuit claims

RAYMONDVILLE — Two wind farms have agreements to overhaul or remove wind turbines that stand on the property of area residents, some of whom have filed a federal lawsuit that claims the plans do not exist, company officials said. Continue...

Vestas blade breaks at Danish wind farm

The blade from the V90-3MW machine broke on Sunday night at a wind development near Sæby, northeast Jutland, run by operator Hojstrup Vind.
While the cause of the break is not yet known Continue...

Wind Turbine Maker Gamesa To Close Western Pa. Plant

EBENSBURG, Pa. (AP) — The Spanish wind turbine manufacturer Gamesa says it will close its western Pennsylvania plant and eliminate the 62 remaining jobs. Continue...

“It’s like living next to an airport an [the planes] never land.”

Berkshire Eagle report, via Wind Wise Massachusetts, describes concernes over industrial wind turbines, aired by Pittsfield residents at DPU hearing January 27,2014   
Opponents to commercial wind energy facilities during the well over three-hour public hearing cited how the state and wind farm developers have ignored the environmental, economic and health impact of wind turbines. The most compelling testimony came from several people who live near the Hoosac Wind project in the town of Florida. The 19 turbines went on line in December 2012, and a month later town residents Nancy Shea and her husband Tim Danyliw moved out of their home.
Shea says they could no longer handle the noise and ill feeling, living 2,200 feet away from the closest turbine.
“It felt like the room was spinning,” she said. “It sounds like a jet engine over the house that doesn’t go away.”
Another neighbor to Hoosac Wind, Michael Fairneny, also feels the project has robbed his quality of life in the rural community.
“My happiness was taken away from my own home,” he said. “It’s like living next to an airport an [the planes] never land.” Continue...

BP Continued Suspension From New U.S. Contracts Sought

BP Plc. (BP/)’s suspension from new government contracts and oil leases after the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill should continue because, government lawyers argued, the company hasn’t demonstrated it’s a responsible contractor. Continue...

Monday, January 27, 2014

Suit filed over wind farm plan

A St. Croix County town has filed suit to block construction of a wind farm proposed by Emerging Energies.
The $250 million project, the Highland Wind Farm, has been on the drawing board for several years and was initially rejected by the state Public Service Commission. The commission later reconsidered and gave the project the go-ahead last fall. Continue...


Father-son duo’s civic roots planted deep in Cape Vincent

CAPE VINCENT — Son and father Paul F. and Darrel J. Aubertine share a lot in common.
Paul, 31, launched his political career this month by attending his first board meeting as the lone Democratic member of the Cape Vincent Town Council. Darrel, a proud parent seated in the audience during the Jan. 16 meeting with his wife, Margaret S.    Continue...

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Good News from the Renewable Energy Sector

March 20,2013

Suntech Is Pushed Into Chinese Bankruptcy Court

Solar-panel maker Suntech Power Holdings Co. has been forced into Chinese bankruptcy proceedings,


March 28,2013

Broken Bow wind farm isn’t delayed by bankruptcy filing

NORTH PLATTE — A bankruptcy filing by Edison Mission Energy will not keep the Broken Bow Wind Farm from expanding. Officials say they expect to have a new system of wind turbines up and running by the first part of 2014.

June 24, 2013 
Wind firm sued by state of Minnesota files Chapter 7 bankruptcy
Renewable Energy SD, an Excelsior seller of wind energy equipment that was sued for fraud by the Minnesota attorney general’s office, has filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.


July 18,2013
Nordex USA Closes Wind Turbine Plant Despite Millions in Subsidies
Wind turbine manufacturer Nordex USA announced it will close its Arkansas production facility after accepting millions of dollars in subsidies

September 9,2013

German wind farm developer Windreich files for insolvency

Windreich AG, Germany's largest developer of offshore wind farms, has filed for insolvency 

October 11 2013
WinWinD files for bankruptcy
 Finnish wind turbine manufacturer WinWinD filed for bankruptcy on 3 October 2013.

Ocober 19,2013

Turbine-maker Nordic Windpower files for liquidation bankruptcy

November 23,2013
Offshore wind Bard is bankrupt
The bankruptcy is bad news for ports in northern Germany, which were looking forward to strong offshore growth providing local jobs in the shipping sector that faces fierce competition, especially from Korea.

December 03,2013
Electrawinds seeks investors, holds off bankruptcy
The board of Electrawinds, which operates a large wind-turbine farm off the Flemish coast, has decided not to apply for bankruptcy while talks to attract new investors continue. 
January 22,2014
Wind farm operators Prokon files for bankruptcy
The wind farm operator Prokon is broke. The company from Itzehoe near Hamburg on Wednesday confirmed to have filed for bankruptcy. 

 January 23,2014

Xtreme Power files Bankruptcy on Stalking Horse bid

Texas-based digital power management and energy storage company Xtreme Power has filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the Western District Courts of Texas

Wind turbine topples in Mill Run, startles residents Read more: http://triblive.com/news/fayette/5429447-74/wind-steyer-turbines#ixzz2rYMT1nvo Follow us: @triblive on Twitter | triblive on Facebook

When big wind turbines fall, they make a lot of noise. But not everyone hears the crash. Continue...

Friday, January 24, 2014

"Cape Vincent nicer than portrayed in letter"

Do nice people attempt to stop their neighbors from voting?

Cape Vincent nicer than portrayed in letter

Watertown Daily Times
Elisabeth Brennan

This letter is a response to a recent letter that the Times published and titled “Cape Vincent no longer nice friendly town.”
While I felt the author made some valid points, many of which I agreed with, I would like to take exception to some of his remarks and to the headline the Watertown Daily Times chose to use for this letter. My first objection deals with the author equating the politics of Cape Vincent to that of the south in the 1960s. Continue,,,

Cape Vincent no longer nice, friendly town

 Watertown Daily Times
Harry Landers 

Abraham Lincoln said, “... and that government of the people, by the people, for the people shall not perish from the earth.” We all were taught it meant all people.

Why would Paul Aubertine, Dennis Pearson and Alan Wood try to exclude a group of people? What about their civil rights? Remember the quote, “Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” Continue..

Transcript for the 12/09/13 BP wind project procedural status conference in Cape Vincent, NY

Re: Case 12-F-0410- Cape Vincent Wind Power, LLC - Article 10 Application to the 
NYS Siting Board to Construct a Generating Facility - Procedural Status 
Conference – 12/9/2013. 

Link here to read document no downloading required

Whistling in the Wind

Europe abandons country-by-country CO2 emissions targets.

President Obama and his allies keep saying that a major second-term priority is to expand subsidies and mandates to produce alternatives to carbon energy, so they must not be watching Europe. On Wednesday the European Commission abandoned country-by-country targets for greenhouse-gas emissions after 2020. Continue reading via this link to The wall Street Journal

New permits for turbines allow wind farms to kill eagles up to 30 years

 Aerial shot of Wolfe Island 

In a move wildlife conservationists fear could endanger the growing population of bald eagles that nest along the St. Lawrence River, a federal rule relaxed in December allows wind turbine operators to kill or injure the birds for up to 30 years without penalty. Continue...

Thursday, January 23, 2014

EU scraps targets forcing Britain to build wind farms

UK free to go nuclear and use fracking. 

 The EU has scrapped rules that bind countries to renewable energy targets, lifting demands that Britain build more wind and solar farms.Continue... 

Wind farm developer Prokon has filed for insolvency

GERMANY: Wind farm developer Prokon has filed for insolvency following the withdrawal of capital by a number of investors. Continue...

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

NaturEner sues over utility's eagle death investment withdrawal

San Diego Gas & Electric (SDGE) promised in 2012 to buy a $285 million stake in the Rim Rock wind farm in Montana, but withdrew from the deal later that year.
The utility company said that NaturEner had breached the contract because it had failed to properly take into account the possibility of eagle deaths when planning the development, and misrepresented the threat when the deal was made. Continue...


 The American Wind Energy Association’s top federal lobbyist, Vice President for Federal Legislative Affairs Chris Chwastyk, will step down at the end of the month. Chwastyk is taking time off and then evaluating his options, an AWEA spokeswoman said. The move comes during a crucial time for the wind industry, whose major tax credit recently expired and whose future in tax reform is uncertain. Chwastyk had been with AWEA since 2009; before that he was chief of staff to Texas Democrat Chet Edwards. Aaron Severn, AWEA's legislative and grassroots director, will fill in until a replacement is found. Continue..

BP sells 150MW scheme to Pattern

Pattern Energy Group has agreed to buy the 150MW Fowler Ridge 4 wind project in Indiana from BP Wind Energy North America.
BP has applied to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission for approval. The UK-based company asked for a decision by 14 February to accommodate closing of the transaction as soon as possible thereafter. Continue...

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Smoked salmon and Dolly Parton

SCOTTISH ministers tried to cover up an amazing list of gifts received by civil servants, including several from private companies bidding for public contracts.

I don’t think civil servants from Marine Scotland or any other department should be accepting hospitality, especially not from the renewables industry. Said Wind farm campaigner George Watson.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Cape Vincent plans to waive overdue charges to resident for DANC waterline

CAPE VINCENT — Resident Donald R. Votra has refused to pay a monthly charge on his tax bill of $106.85 for the past 19 months, assessed by the town because his house that is equipped with an underground well could instead be connected to a waterline operated by the Development Authority of the North Country.
1/17/14 4:37 PM
The following post was originally posted April 24, 2012 it was pieced together from information obtained through a FOIL request and the Jefferson County Tax database.

According to the water district agreement for Water District #2, there are five users.

Town of Cape Vincent Tax ID 49.00-1-43
Donny Mason Parcel Tax ID # 40.00-1-43
Darrel Aubertine Tax ID # 50.00-1-16
Donald Votra Tax ID #49.00 -1-9

Wesley Bourcy Tax ID #49.00-1-11.3
 This parcel was added in 1999

Donald Votra is a member of the water district but chose not to be hooked up.

The DANC Regional water line runs through and/ or parallel to these parcels allowing them to directly hook into the DANC line. (See map below)

These users or owners are billed for their water on a monthly basis accordingly, Donny Mason gets a water bill, Wesley Bourcy gets a water bill, however, Darrel Aubertine does not get a water bill.
The water bill for Darrel’s land is addressed to Terry Aubertine’s Hell Street address.

Additionally, the bill is not for parcel # 50.00-1-16, the vacant lot in water district #2, owned by Darrel Aubertine .
The actual service location is listed as 3244 Hell Street ; this is the farm that once belonged to Paul Aubertine, Darrel Aubertine’s father. The Tax maps show that it now belongs to Darrel Aubertine. The parcel number(40.00-1-17) listed in the water service contract was not a Typo; this water service location is completely outside of the Boundaries of District #2.

 land information  from Jefferson County  tax database

SWIS: 222889 Tax ID: 40.00-1-17
Darrel J Aubertine 32554 Hell St
Cape Vincent NY 13618
Margaret S Aubertine 32554 Hell St
Cape Vincent NY 13618
Water Supply: None ***
The dark Black line on the map below is the DANC Regional water line & the green star is the property out side the district that is billed as a service location in the district.

Below are documents pertaining to Water District #2

Cape Vincent,Water District 2  
Original Rules ~ and Regulations

Cape Vincent,Water District 2
 Rules  and Regulations as amended  3 -11-1999

Cape Vincent Water District 2 

Rules and Regs. as Amended  12 -9-1999

Thursday, January 16, 2014

BP plans wind pipeline disposal

November 01 2013
BP confirmed it still plans to sell its entire US wind development portfolio comprising 18 projects – but will retain its operating assets.
 One of the highest profile, the planned 124-turbine Cape Vincent wind farm in Jefferson.  continue...

Power Bills Skyrocket

ELIZABETHTOWN — The controversy over a big increase in National Grid bills this month sparked outrage Tuesday from some Essex County lawmakers. Electricity prices jumped 50 percent or higher last month statewide. Continue...

BP Risk Versus Value

BP has vowed to keep fighting compensation claims arising from the massive Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. The problem is that it doesn't believe all of the claims have merit, to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars. That's a good reason to keep fighting, but it means there's still oil-spill risk. Long-running legal woes aren't uncommon in the oil industry, and if history is any guide, BP has decades to go before this issue is behind it. Continue...

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Is Aubertine Electable?

Rep. William L. Owens’s announcement Tuesday that he will not seek re-election has left previously declared and potential candidates trying to figure out what it means in the race for New York’s 21st Congressional District. 
Darrel J. Aubertine, former commissioner of the state Department of Agriculture and Markets, said Mr. Owens has done a great job for the region.
I wouldn’t discount the opportunity to serve given the opportunity to serve,” he said. [1] 

Can Aubertine withstand the scrutiny of a probe into his political history?

In 2006,as an assemblyman, Aubertine wrote a letter to the Cape Vincent Town Board urging conflicted wind lease holding board members to vote on wind turbine setbacks.[2]

The critical issue for Darrel Aubertine and his neighbors was that bigger setbacks would mean fewer wind turbines resulting in lost revenue for him as well as his crony’s[3]

After being elected to the State senate in 2008, one of Aubertine’s first actions was to hire his sister. A clear violation of  the ethics reform bill he sponsored and voted for. It wasn't until months later during a campaign debate that Aubertine admitted that he had broken the law.[4]

As a Senator (wind leaseholder) Aubertine voted on legislation that eliminated a tax penalty for farmers that host wind turbines on their land.[5]

In February of 2013, the Editorial Board of the Syracuse Post standard raised issues concerning contracts and mismanagement at the NYS Fair ,Suggesting that Gov. Cuomo clean house by starting at the top with Commissioner of Agriculture & Markets Darrel Aubertine on whose watch the scandal happened. [6]

Aubertine's resignation as Commissioner of Agriculture & Markets was first suggested this past September, by Fred Dicker in a report in the NY Post concerning investigations of members of Gov. Cuomo’s administration. [7]

Will voters consider his political past?  

[6]  Another scandal at the state fair begs the question: Who will clean it up?


Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Owens Announces He Will Not Seek Re-Election?

In a press release issued Tuesday morning, U.S. Rep. William L. Owens, D-Plattsburgh, said he will not run for re-election in 2014.

“After careful thought and consideration, I have decided not to seek re-election for the 21st Congressional District this November.  I have enjoyed the opportunity to travel the district, meeting and serving the families and business owners of this vast community.  It has truly been a privilege to serve, and I plan on continuing to work for a brighter future for the region.

My appreciation for the support of my wife, children, grandchildren and close friends cannot be sufficiently expressed in words. There are others -- too numerous to list -- to whom I owe a great debt of gratitude.  The remainder of my term will be spent in much the same way as the previous four years:  assisting constituents with their individual concerns, continuing to focus on passing a Farm Bill, helping to create jobs in our communities, working for our troops and veterans, keeping the northern border secure and fluid and being a voice in Congress for bipartisanship, as well as fact-based decision making.  You can count on me to work with and for you over the remainder of my term.

It is time for me to undertake new endeavors and spend more time with my family.   Even though I will not seek re-election, it is my goal that the next phase of my life will continue to focus on helping to improve the lives of all New Yorkers, primarily through job creation and economic development. 

Thank you for letting me serve you since November 2009.”

Outrageous !!! Iberdrola ignores two to one referendum vote against Danbury New Hampshire wind project.

Danbury  New Hampshire.
Results of a referendum vote taken last month showed 249 residents opposed to Iberdrola's proposed project and 116 residents in favor it.
Selectmen in Alexandria officially adopted their residents' stance against the project Tuesday night.
Paul Copleman, communication manager for Iberdrola Renewables was quoted as saying  "We appreciate the efforts of Danbury's town leaders to solicit the views of local voters, but don't think the low level of responses provides an accurate reflection of local sentiment,"   Iberdrola Renewables, is proposing to build a 75.9-megawatt wind farm with 23 500-foot turbines in view of Cardigan Mountain and Newfound Lake. Continue...

Utah group charts lake-effect snowfall in Tug Hill for Lake Ontario study

Tucked between Lake Ontario and the Adirondacks, the mountainous Tug Hill Plateau is among the best spots in the world for drawing lake-effect snow, according to Dr. James Steenburgh, University of Utah professor of atmospheric sciences. Continue...

Monday, January 13, 2014

Micro-Turbine Technology Could Use Wind Power To Charge Mobile Devices.

Researchers from the University of Texas at Arlington have developed a micro-windmill that can generate wind energy despite being just one-tenth the size of a grain of rice, making it an innovative way to power cell phones or other technological devices without the need for large turbines. Continue...

A dark side to wind turbines

They’re touted as the future of energy production – clean, efficient and renewable. But there’s a dark side to wind turbines for wildlife – towers and spinning blades kill thousands of birds and bats on the Altamont Pass east of Livermore, California, each year.  Continue...

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Cape Vincent no longer nice, friendly town

A Letter to the editor from today's Watertown Daily Times

Abraham Lincoln said, “... and that government of the people, by the people, for the people shall not perish from the earth.” We all were taught it meant all people.

Why would Paul Aubertine, Dennis Pearson and Alan Wood try to exclude a group of people? What about their civil rights? Remember the quote, “Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” Continue..

This letter to the editor in today's Watertown Daily Times addresses the prejudice against seasonal voters in Cape Vincent.

 This past election the Democratic candidates Paul Aubertine, Dennis Pearson and Al Wood challenged a large number of absentee ballots based on residency issues. 
They believe that seasonal residents of Cape Vincent should not be allowed to vote.  

Below is the list of seasonal voters challenged by Aubertine, Pearson and Wood that was provided by the Jefferson County Board of Elections through a Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) request:

Friday, January 10, 2014

Judge: Hounsfield liable for $160K legal bill over Galloo Island Wind Farm development

SACKETS HARBOR — A state Supreme Court judge has ruled the town of Hounsfield is responsible for a Watertown law firm’s $160,615 bill for services rendered related to the Galloo Island Wind Farm development.
Judge James P. McClusky granted summary judgment on behalf of Schwerzmann & Wise PC, which had sued the town in January 2013 claiming it was never paid for work done between December 2009 and July 2012. Continue...

MacSherry appointed deputy supervisor in Cape Vincent

CAPE VINCENT — Town Supervisor Urban C. Hirschey convened an organizational board meeting Wednesday to appoint Richard H. MacSherry as deputy supervisor. Continue...

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Downed trees from across Jefferson County could be heading to biomass plant

FORT DRUM — Fallen tree limbs and other debris from recent storms across the north country may get new life as fuel at ReEnergy Holdings LLC’s Black River biomass facility on post.
The company is in discussions with the city of Watertown to pick up its debris, and a meeting will be held next week for the company to talk with highway superintendents across Jefferson County. The company also planned to reach out to St. Lawrence County municipalities to discuss collecting their debris. Continue...

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

China on world's 'biggest push' for wind power

China has embarked on the greatest push for renewable energy the world has ever seen.
A key element involves more than doubling the number of wind turbines in the next six years.
Already the world's largest producer of wind power, China plans further massive increases. Continue...

Orangeville not alone in wind turbine failure

The November blade failure at the Orangeville Wind Farm may not be an isolated incident, as other wind farms across the country have had similar troubles.
In addition to Orangeville, wind farms in Illinois and Michigan have also experienced failures, involving 1.6-100 megawatt turbines manufactured by General Electric (GE). Continue...

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Lessons from New York’s phony green bank

On December 19, 2013, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s office quietly issued a press release announcing that $210 million in initial funding was being poured into something called the “New York Green Bank.” The governor’s spin doctors insisted that this endeavor was a “bold, new market oriented approach to accelerate clean energy deployment, create jobs, and help make our communities more resilient and sustainable.”
Uh huh.  Continue...

Monday, January 6, 2014

The Cleantech Crash

Despite billions invested by the U.S. government in so-called “Cleantech” energy, Washington and Silicon Valley have little to show for it

About a decade ago, the smart people who funded the Internet turned their attention to the energy sector, rallying tech engineers to invent ways to get us off fossil fuels, devise powerful solar panels, clean cars, and futuristic batteries. The idea got a catchy name: “Cleantech.” 
Continue... "The Cleantech Crash" which aired on Jan. 5, 2014. Lesley Stahl is the correspondent. Shachar Bar-On, producer.

South Carolina cormorant hunting season could reduce numbers that migrate to north country fisheries

 Fewer double-breasted cormorants are expected to migrate north to fisheries in Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River this spring, as hunters in South Carolina will be given liberty to kill the birds with firearms on the Santee Cooper lakes in February and March. Continue...

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Wind-subsidy death was the right decision for the wrong reason

At midnight Tuesday, with little fanfare, the production tax credit for wind energy expired. And according to the majority of knowledgeable observers, it is likely to remain dead at least through the coming Congress, since the Republican House of Representatives has little appetite for alternative-energy subsidies. Continue...

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Words Mean Things

  Last spring I did a post titled COMMUNITY ACCEPTANCE OF WIND IN LITTLE APPALACHIA, it was about an outreach specialist Marion Trieste (Trieste Associates), she was hired by British Petroleum in 2008, to do "outreach work” for their proposed Cape Vincent wind complex.

The focus of this post was a webinar that highlighted the methods used by Trieste to facilitate a community’s acceptance of wind.

 Among other things in this webinar, Trieste described rural New York as little Appalachia.

 What exactly did Trieste mean by Little Appalachia?
Was she drawing on the typical stereotypes associated with Appalachia?

Was she saying that the people living in rural New York are naive, inbred, illiterate, toothless hicks in bib overalls, swilling moonshine from jugs hanging from their belts?

 Was she painting Cape Vincent with the same stereotypes used to entertain people? 

Things like the Beverly Hillbillies, Hee Haw, the Dukes of Hazard and Deliverance?

Or was Trieste referring to the economic hardships in Appalachia, created by companies much like BP, that exploit the natural resources for a profit, exacted at the expense of the people, and the environment.

Norma Schmidt testifies at Armow Wind appeal hearing in Kincardine

“Being deprived of sleep night after night is torture. Do I need to be an expert in torture to understand this?”

The Saugeen Times
Norma Schmidt spoke emotionally and haltingly Friday, Dec. 20, as she testified before the Environmental Review Tribunal which is hearing evidence at the appeal against the proposed Armow Wind development in Kincardine. Continue...

Friday, January 3, 2014

Man says Groton Wind turbine project turned his dream house into nightmare

GROTON — When former Boston Police Patrolman Mario Rampino moved in 1996 to a small cabin at the top of Groton Hollow Road along Clark Brook, he thought he had found his dream home. Continue...

No property assessment reduction for Wolfe Island couple

A Wolfe Island couple learned late in 2013 that a re-evaluation of their cottage property, based in part on their proximity to wind turbines, would not result in an assessment reduction.
It was a last ray of hope for Ed and Gail Kenney, who had also unsuccessfully challenged the property value of their home before a Municipal Property Assessment Corporation tribunal, claiming it had been devalued since the construction of the 86-turbine project on the island.
The couple have not been alone in their efforts. Continue...

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Editorial: Balancing energy needs and raptor safety is worth a better effort

The Obama administration has proposed new rules that would allow the operators of the wind farms to apply for 30-year permits allowing them leeway in the number of migratory birds they kill, so long as the operator has a plan in place to help mitigate the danger. Environmental groups worry such permits would be akin to a blank check for operators to kill species such as bald eagles.

Wind power generation may make the power grid more fragile

According to research published online in IEEE Transactions on Power Systems.  Researchers from North Carolina State University and Johns Hopkins University found that increasing wind power generation makes the power grid more susceptible to disruptions.    Continue...

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

The Dark Side of Wind power

LIVERMORE -- They're touted as the future of energy production -- clean, efficient and renewable. But there's a dark side to wind turbines for local wildlife -- towers and spinning blades kill thousands of birds and bats on the Altamont Pass east of Livermore each year.
While the hazards there aren't unique, recent studies suggest up to twice as many birds are killed every year at the Altamont Wind Resource Area (AWRA) than previously indicated by official estimates. Continue...